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Thread: aspiration of consonants

  1. #1
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    aspiration of consonants

    Is it true that if one pronounces "p", "t", "k" without aspiration, people will think he pronounced "b", ""d", "g"?

  2. #2
    Почтенный гражданин bitpicker's Avatar
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    No, the difference is not just one of aspiration but of voiceless against voiced. But generally English consonants tend to be more aspired than their Russian counterparts.

    You have to keep in mind that the hardening* of final consonants, which exists in Russian, does not exist in English. So it's much more likely that you pronounce a final b, d or g sound without voice by mistake, where English keeps it voiced.

    * It is also important to note that in English "hard" and "soft" are mostly understood to be "voiceless" and "voiced" respectively, this does not refer to the concepts of hard and soft as they are in understood in the context of Russian. When a voiced consonant becomes voiceless it is called hardening.
    Спасибо за исправления!

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  3. #3
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    bitpicker, is it the same in German? Why do Germans often pronounce voiced consonants as voiceless aspirated in Russian?

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    Почтенный гражданин bitpicker's Avatar
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    German also has hardening of end consonants, and not only in words but in syllables. That's one reason. Then, I suppose that very often German speakers will mix up the c and з sounds. In German, c cannot be in the first position of a word, for example (apart from forewign words, such as service, of course - but even then many people will use a voiced s.). In other places it's the other way round. And in German p, t and k are always aspirated, it's actually pretty hard to not aspirate them that much.

    All in all, there is only very little agreement between the phonemes used in German and in Russian.
    Спасибо за исправления!

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  5. #5
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    I suppose that very often German speakers will mix up the c and з sounds.
    Do they have the same problem in English?
    They sometimes say the word собака as sopaka with aspirated "p".

  6. #6
    Почтенный гражданин bitpicker's Avatar
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    Yes, the same mistakes typically apply to English.
    Спасибо за исправления!

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